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Andy Warhol’s “Jackie” Paintings

Andy Warhol Posters - Marilyn Monroe 1964
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Possibly the greatest, and in some people’s opinion, the most significant works ever created by Andy Warhol were his Jackie paintings.

Warhol, like many others, anticipated a great future for the United States when President Kennedy was elected, and personally felt a profound connection with him, as well as with his goals for the country. After the President’s death in 1963, he became angered with the media for dwelling on the nation’s grief and despair instead of focusing on Kennedy’s dream for the nation. They were making it virtually impossible to escape the sorrow. Subsequently, Warhol began to paint Kennedy’s widow, Jackie. He painted her as a symbol of honour and strength, pride and elegance, courage and determination in the face of tragedy. He greatly admired the First Lady.

His paintings were derived from images that he took from magazines and newspapers, creating iconic pop art portraits, and uniquely reinventing her person in depictions that would last for decades. He implemented repetition, produced depth, and applied a vast array of colors to the Jackie paintings. One of his remarkable achievements was to capture her mood.

“When President Kennedy was shot that fall, I heard the news over the radio while I was alone painting in my studio… I’d been thrilled having Kennedy as president; he was handsome, young, smart – but it didn’t bother me that much that he was dead. What bothered me was the way the television and radios were programming everybody to feel so sad… It seemed like no matter how hard you tried, you couldn’t get away from the thing.” – Andy Warhol

“During the 1960s, I think, people forgot what emotions were supposed to be. And I don't think they've ever remembered.” – Andy Warhol

 

 

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